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Browsing by Author "Lin, Chien-Chi"
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ItemApplication of Salubrinal for Bone Fracture Healing(Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, 2014-04-11) Yokota, Hiroki; Lin, Chien-ChiThe long-term objective of this project is to commercialize a novel synthetic chemical agent, salubrinal, for treatment of bone growth and fracture healing. Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are clinically administered as growth stimulators for bone fracture healing. However, BMPs are not only expensive, but also stimulate ectopic bone formation and potentially induce cancer. A synthetic chemical agent that permits facile storage and administration could reduce costs, and provide longer shelf-life, and better bone healing outcomes. Currently, no synthetic chemical agents as a stimulator of fracture healing are clinically available. The research team recently identified “salubrinal,” a synthetic chemical agent, as a potential therapeutic stimulator of bone growth and fracture healing. An invention disclosure and a U.S. patent were filed. In this FORCES project, we are examining efficacy of salubrinal using a mouse model of closed tibia fracture. The results strongly indicate that salubrinal can accelerate bone fracture healing. ItemAssessing monocyte phenotype in poly(γ-glutamic acid) hydrogels formed by orthogonal thiol–norbornene chemistry(IOP, 2021-07) Kim, Min Hee; Lin, Chien-Chi; Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyHydrogels with tunable properties are highly desirable in tissue engineering applications as they can serve as artificial extracellular matrix to control cellular fate processes, including adhesion, migration, differentiation, and other phenotypic changes via matrix induced mechanotransduction. Poly(γ-glutamic acid) (PGA) is an natural anionic polypeptide that has excellent biocompatibility, biodegradability, and water solubility. Moreover, the abundant carboxylic acids on PGA can be readily modified to introduce additional functionality or facilitate chemical crosslinking. PGA and its derivatives have been widely used in tissue engineering applications. However, no prior work has explored orthogonal crosslinking of PGA hydrogels by thiol-norbornene (NB) chemistry. In this study, we report the synthesis and orthogonal crosslinking of PGA-norbornene (PGANB) hydrogels. PGANB was synthesized by standard carbodiimide chemistry and crosslinked into hydrogels via either photopolymerization or enzymatic reaction. Moduli of PGA hydrogels were readily tuned by controlling thiol-NB crosslinking conditions or stoichiometric ratio of functional groups. Orthogonally crosslinked PGA hydrogels were used to evaluate the influence of mechanical cues of hydrogel substrate on the phenotype of naïve human monocytes and M0 macrophages in 3D culture. ItemBiomimetic and enzyme-responsive dynamic hydrogels for studying cell-matrix interactions in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma(Elsevier, 2018-04) Liu, Hung-Yi; Korc, Murray; Lin, Chien-Chi; Biomedical and Applied Sciences, School of DentistryThe tumor microenvironment (TME) governs all aspects of cancer progression and in vitro 3D cell culture platforms are increasingly developed to emulate the interactions between components of the stromal tissues and cancer cells. However, conventional cell culture platforms are inadequate in recapitulating the TME, which has complex compositions and dynamically changing matrix mechanics. In this study, we developed a dynamic gelatin-hyaluronic acid hybrid hydrogel system through integrating modular thiol-norbornene photopolymerization and enzyme-triggered on-demand matrix stiffening. In particular, gelatin was dually modified with norbornene and 4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid to render this bioactive protein photo-crosslinkable (through thiol-norbornene gelation) and responsive to tyrosinase-triggered on-demand stiffening (through HPA dimerization). In addition to the modified gelatin that provides basic cell adhesive motifs and protease cleavable sequences, hyaluronic acid (HA), an essential tumor matrix, was modularly and covalently incorporated into the cell-laden gel network. We systematically characterized macromer modification, gel crosslinking, as well as enzyme-triggered stiffening and degradation. We also evaluated the influence of matrix composition and dynamic stiffening on pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) cell fate in 3D. We found that either HA-containing matrix or a dynamically stiffened microenvironment inhibited PDAC cell growth. Interestingly, these two factors synergistically induced cell phenotypic changes that resembled cell migration and/or invasion in 3D. Additional mRNA expression array analyses revealed changes unique to the presence of HA, to a stiffened microenvironment, or to the combination of both. Finally, we presented immunostaining and mRNA expression data to demonstrate that these irregular PDAC cell phenotypes were a result of matrix-induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). ItemBiomimetic stiffening of cell-laden hydrogels via sequential thiol-ene and hydrazone click reactions(Elsevier, 2021) Chang, Chun-Yi; Johnson, Hunter C.; Babb, Olivia; Fishel, Melissa L.; Lin, Chien-Chi; Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyHydrogels with dynamically tunable crosslinking are invaluable for directing stem cell fate and mimicking a stiffening matrix during fibrosis or tumor development. The increases in matrix stiffness during tissue development are often accompanied by the accumulation of extracellular matrices (e.g., collagen, hyaluronic acid (HA)), a phenomenon that has received little attention in the development of dynamic hydrogels. In this contribution, we present a gelatin-based cell-laden hydrogel system capable of being dynamically stiffened while accumulating HA, a key glycosaminoglycans (GAG) increasingly deposited by stromal cells during tumor progression. Central to this strategy is the synthesis of a dually-modified gelatin macromer – gelatin-norbornene-carbohydrazide (GelNB-CH), which is susceptible to both thiol-norbornene photopolymerization and hydrazone click chemistry. We demonstrate that the crosslinking density of cell-laden thiol-norbornene hydrogels can be dynamically tuned via simple incubation with aldehyde-bearing macromers (e.g., oxidized dextran (oDex) or oHA). The GelNB-CH hydrogel system is highly cytocompatible, as demonstrated by in situ encapsulation of pancreatic cancer cells (PCC) and cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAF). The unique dynamic stiffening scheme provides a platform to study tandem accumulation of HA and elevation in matrix stiffness in the pancreatic tumor microenvironment. ItemClickable modular polysaccharide nanoparticles for selective cell-targeting(Elsevier, 2020-04-15) Peuler, Kevin; Dimmitt, Nathan; Lin, Chien-Chi; Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyA therapeutic nanocarrier capable of cell targeting has the potential to reduce off-target effects of otherwise effective drugs. Nanoparticle surface modification can be tailored for specific cells, however multistep surface modification can prove slow and difficult for a variety of cell types. Here, we designed drug carrying polysaccharide based nanoparticles with a layered structure for clickable surface modification. The center of nanoparticle was composed of cationic macromer (e.g., poly-L-lysine) and anionic polysaccharide (e.g., heparin). Furthermore, a ‘clickable’ polysaccharide was installed on the surface of the nanoparticles to permit a wide range of bioconjugation via norbornene-tetrazine click chemistry. The utilities of these layered nanoparticles were demonstrated via enhanced protein sequestration, selective cell targeting (via PEGylation or altering polysaccharide coating), as well as loading and release of chemotherapeutic. The drug-loaded nanocarriers proved cytotoxic to J774A.1 monocytes and MOLM-14 leukemia cells. ItemComparative study of visible light polymerized gelatin hydrogels for 3D culture of hepatic progenitor cells(Wiley, 2017-03) Greene, Tanja; Lin, Tsai-Yu; Andrisani, Oaurania M.; Lin, Chien-Chi; Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyPhotopolymerization techniques have been widely used to create hydrogels for biomedical applications. Visible light-based photopolymerizations are commonly initiated by type II (i.e., noncleavage-type) photoinitiator in conjunction with a coinitiator. On the other hand, type I photoinitiators (i.e., cleavage type) are rarely compatible with visible light-based initiation due to their limited molar absorbability in the visible light wavelengths. Here, we report visible light initiated orthogonal photoclick crosslinking to fabricate gelatin-norbornene and poly(ethylene glycol)-tetra-thiol hydrogels using either cleavage-type (i.e., lithium acylphosphinate, LAP) or noncleavage-type photoinitiator (i.e., eosin-Y, EY) without the use of a coinitiator. Regardless of the initiator type, the step-growth gelatin-PEG hybrid hydrogels crosslinked and degraded similarly. While both systems exhibited similar cytocompatibility for hepatic progenitor HepaRG cells, gelation initiated by noncleavage-type initiator EY afforded slightly higher degree of hepatic gene expression. ItemCorrection: Sun et al. Generation of the Chondroprotective Proteomes by Activating PI3K and TNFα Signaling. Cancers 2022, 14, 3039(MDPI, 2022-09-09) Sun, Xun; Li, Ke-Xin; Figueiredo, Marxa L.; Lin, Chien-Chi; Li, Bai-Yan; Yokota, Hiroki; Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyErratum for: Generation of the Chondroprotective Proteomes by Activating PI3K and TNFα Signaling. Sun X, Li KX, Figueiredo ML, Lin CC, Li BY, Yokota H. Cancers (Basel). 2022 Jun 21;14(13):3039. doi: 10.3390/cancers14133039. PMID: 35804814 ItemDesigner hydrogels: Shedding light on the physical chemistry of the pancreatic cancer microenvironment(Elsevier, 2018-11) Lin, Chien-Chi; Korc, Murray; Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyPancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is currently the third leading cause of cancer mortality in the United States, with a 5-year survival of ∼8%. PDAC is characterized by a dense and hypo-vascularized stroma consisting of proliferating cancer cells, cancer-associated fibroblasts, macrophages and immune cells, as well as excess matrices including collagens, fibronectin, and hyaluronic acid. In addition, PDAC has increased interstitial pressures and a hypoxic/acidic tumor microenvironment (TME) that impedes drug delivery and blocks cancer-directed immune mechanisms. In spite of increasing options in targeted therapy, PDAC has mostly remained treatment recalcitrant. Owing to its critical roles on governing PDAC progression and treatment outcome, TME and its interplay with the cancer cells are increasingly studied. In particular, three-dimensional (3D) hydrogels derived from or inspired by components in the TME are progressively developed. When properly designed, these hydrogels (e.g., Matrigel, collagen gel, hyaluronic acid-based, and semi-synthetic hydrogels) can provide pathophysiologically relevant compositions, conditions, and contexts for supporting PDAC cell fate processes. This review summarizes recent efforts in using 3D hydrogels for fundamental studies on cell-matrix or cell-cell interactions in PDAC. ItemDesigning Visible Light-Cured Thiol-Acrylate Hydrogels for Studying the HIPPO Pathway Activation in Hepatocellular Carcinoma Cells(Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons), 2016-04) Lin, Tsai-Yu; Bragg, John C.; Lin, Chien-Chi; Department of Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyVarious polymerization mechanisms have been developed to prepare peptide-immobilized poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) hydrogels, a class of biomaterials suitable for studying cell biology in vitro. Here, a visible light mediated thiol-acrylate photopolymerization scheme is reported to synthesize dually degradable PEG-peptide hydrogels with controllable crosslinking and degradability. The influence of immobilized monothiol pendant peptide is systematically evaluated on the crosslinking of these hydrogels. Further, methods are proposed to modulate hydrogel crosslinking, including adjusting concentration of comonomer or altering the design of multifunctional peptide crosslinker. Due to the formation of thioether ester bonds, these hydrogels are hydrolytically degradable. If the dithiol peptide linkers used are susceptible to protease cleavage, these thiol-acrylate hydrogels can be designed to undergo partial proteolysis. The differences between linear and multiarm PEG-acrylate (i.e., PEGDA vs PEG4A) are also evaluated. Finally, the use of the mixed-mode thiol-acrylate PEG4A-peptide hydrogels is explored for in situ encapsulation of hepatocellular carcinoma cells (Huh7). The effects of matrix stiffness and integrin binding motif (e.g., RGDS) on Huh7 cell growth and HIPPO pathway activation are studied using PEG4A-peptide hydrogels. This visible light poly-merized thiol-acrylate hydrogel system represents an alternative to existing light-cured hydrogel platforms and shall be useful in many biomedical applications. ItemA Diffusion-Reaction Model for Predicting Enzyme-Mediated Dynamic Hydrogel Stiffening(MDPI, 2019-03-13) Liu, Hung-Yi; Lin, Chien-Chi; Biomedical Engineering, School of Engineering and TechnologyHydrogels with spatiotemporally tunable mechanical properties have been increasingly employed for studying the impact of tissue mechanics on cell fate processes. These dynamic hydrogels are particularly suitable for recapitulating the temporal stiffening of a tumor microenvironment. To this end, we have reported an enzyme-mediated stiffening hydrogel system where tyrosinase (Tyrase) was used to stiffen orthogonally crosslinked cell-laden hydrogels. Herein, a mathematical model was proposed to describe enzyme diffusion and reaction within a highly swollen gel network, and to elucidate the critical factors affecting the degree of gel stiffening. Briefly, Fick's second law of diffusion was used to predict enzyme diffusion in a swollen poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-peptide hydrogel, whereas the Michaelis⁻Menten model was employed for estimating the extent of enzyme-mediated secondary crosslinking. To experimentally validate model predictions, we designed a hydrogel system composed of 8-arm PEG-norbornene (PEG8NB) and bis-cysteine containing peptide crosslinker. Hydrogel was crosslinked in a channel slide that permitted one-dimensional diffusion of Tyrase. Model predictions and experimental results suggested that an increasing network crosslinking during stiffening process did not significantly affect enzyme diffusion. Rather, diffusion path length and the time of enzyme incubation were more critical in determining the distribution of Tyrase and the formation of additional crosslinks in the hydrogel network. Finally, we demonstrated that the enzyme-stiffened hydrogels exhibited elastic properties similar to other chemically crosslinked hydrogels. This study provides a better mechanistic understanding regarding the process of enzyme-mediated dynamic stiffening of hydrogels.